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Who names their kid ‘Saksham'?
Names like that ruin childhoods
and leave long-lasting scars.
But two folks never understood
One was Mr. what's-in-a-name Shakespeare
and the other was my father.

It wasn't that bad initially,
when my days were spent concealing braces.
The world was still struggling
to pronounce my name
so it gave me a nickname instead -
‘ShameShame' - followed by a giggle.
It didn't mean anything
and yet felt like me.

Puberty brought pimples and
a new nickname.
I still remember the voice that yelled ‘Sexam'.
The entire class burst into laughter, so hard,
it echoes till today.
They kept chanting the word
as if to vindicate their new-found hormones.

The rest of my schooling life, I spent
stripped of all dignity.
And I learnt a thing about embarrassment:
It doesn't kill you, it just makes you wish,
that it does.

A hint of mustache under my nose
brought a sense of perspective.
There were more things to worry about
than stupid nicknames,
Or so I thought.

The very first day in the university,
a professor had a nasty slip of the tongue.
And I became ‘Sucksome'
for the rest of the year.
Only this time, I didn't feel anything.
resilience or numbness - I can't say

I started avoiding the college cafeteria
for the library.
Books embraced me warmly,
every time the world ridiculed me.
Books explained to me
the meaning of my name.

"Saksham" meant capable, competent, efficient.
It soon became a voice in my head
And I eventually learned
to respond to it.

"yes! Saksham", I thought, "that's me! "
My name become my war cry and my victory song,
my attitude and my arrogance,
my shell and my shine.
My name became me and I became my name.

At an interview for my first job
when I was asked for introduction
I heard myself respond
"I am Saksham…
….and that is also my name."

by saksham sarode

Comments (7)

A TEN and much much more for the Vote! Sincerest, Sylvia Frances Chan, Dutch Poetess, paintress, cartoons, designer of poemcards, photographer, critic, writer and evangelist. I apologize for the small mistakes typed.
LAST PART: at least you infotmed that in the first stanza, right? IF you was not named SAKSHAM, then you would not have been able to create this most attractive poem! I have enjoyed the smartest thoights worded here! Thank YOU for sharing, Saksham!
PART THREE: This poem you have created with a courageous mind and your person is that you wish to survive and you have succeeded in doing so. I am happy for you that you have become a strong person and poet now. Do you want to tell the readers here that you have got your names, given by two men? So your mother is a man too?
PART TWO: These adults are of course PEDOFILS and these saddes kids who were entenring thier teenagers'period, most of them committed suicide. I KNOW this because everytime it occurred, the TV News mentioned that..
At least you have become a mature person and a true personality, you have survived where others commit suicide! In my country, the kids and teens are so weakest, they expose themselves to the internet and when adults are approaching them with the wrong intentions, they could not even flee! .
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